Just received this in an email from Cheryl Richardson of Anchorage Citizens Coalition:
Last week, Mountain View Community Council adopted [a] resolution asking the State to help pay for operating People Mover. The resolution goes next to Fairview Community Council.
While the state’s general fund has been tapped for several hundred million dollars to pay for road building in recent years, Alaska is one of only two states that do not help its cities operate its transit systems.
State Senator Bill Wielechowski and State Rep Max Gruenberg represent East Anchorage and have expressed interest in expanding People Mover service. The Daily News also published supportive editorials last Thursday and Friday.
Anchorage provides less transit service per capita than other western cities, while charging more at the farebox. Just this year, for the first time, People Mover surpassed its 1982 ridership levels – with less service and fewer buses on the streets than in 1982.
Staff say that ridership climbed significantly along with rising fuel prices this summer and fall, and ridership has stayed up, even with falling fuel prices this fall.
Anchorage Citizens Coalition supports transit expansion based on Anchorage 2020 land development goals secured by relible long term funding.
Good news! It’s tempting to say it’s too bad it took decades and $4.00 gas to get there, and too bad it’s another statistic where Alaska comes in dead last or 47th out of 50 or whatever. But let’s not go there. Any improvement, any increase in awareness is progress.